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Discussion Starter #1
Hi! I live in the Las Vegas area.

I have no experience whatsoever with motorcycles. I am however, very much into cars and motorsports with 4wheels.

Now I want to learn motorbikes...whether it be cruisers or sportbikes. I have no idea what the different companies are, and what is considered a good bike.


I am as new as they come. I hope you all can help me get started in my purchase and learning of riding a motorcycle.
 

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Strength and Honor
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First, you should do some extensive reading in the New Riders forum, especially the stickie threads that are the first ones listed. After you've done that I'm sure you'll have questions so come back onto this thread and ask away; that's what we're here for.

Second, if you opt to do something that many members have repeatedly advised against, it is ok to state that but be sure to note that you recognize you're going against conventional wisdom. On the flip side, you should not ask questions about which you don't really want the answer; in other words, if you've made you mind up about something (like the first bike you'll buy) don't ask for advice. That's the quickest way to peeve us off. Outside that we're a motley crew and give each other a hard time (often noted with :twofinger)

Third, I had a good friend move from our area to Las Vegas and she gave up riding because of the large numbers of people who drive drunk around there. Please be aware this risk is higher in your area and ride appropriately.

Last, welcome :cheers:
 

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Kanwisch is slacking, if he wasn't he would tell you that...

...you should take the MSF course. The fees are different from state to state, but it is ussually around $200. For this, and a weekend of your time, you get two days instruction, first in the classroom and then in a parking lot, and best of all it is on their bikes. You walk out with your license. There are several obvious benefits to that.
1. It is much cheaper than buying your own bike, especially if you decide that riding is not your thing.
2. If you drop the bike learning, who cares, its theirs.
3. While they will not teach you anything earth shuddering, it will take you about 6 months to figure all these things out on your own. Mostly because on your own, you are going to start doing things the wrong way, and then will have to relearn.

Welcome!
 

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Strength and Honor
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Vash has kindly covered one of the starter points that are included in a number of threads in the New Riders forum, as noted earlier ;) There are others so, again, I recommend some reading in New Riders. Your up-front asking at such a basic level suggests you're interested in doing some research, so that's a plus for you already, GS.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks.
Its funny you mentioned the New Riders forum. I just noticed it today while loggin in the forum.


But I know I'll have plenty of questions. I'll be back once I read all the threads.
 

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I took the MSF course about a month ago and it was so valuable I can't even fully explain. I am getting my bike either this weekend or early next week and if I didn't take the course, I am positive I would be dead or hurt within a couple days of having my bike. The things they teach are invaluable and they honestly care about your success. Not to mention the class is extremely fun- the most fun I have had in awhile including the in class work. I see that you live in Vegas. That's where I live and where I took the class. The class is going to cost you $350 but is well worth it and I will probably take it again sometime. Register at the Harley Davidson dealership on S. Eastern and Sahara. Register soon because there is about a 2-3 month waiting list.
 

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They give you a certificate, that you take to the DMV to get your license. The certificate means that you do not have to take the DMV riding test, but you do have to take the written one, which the MSF course prepares you for. At least, thats how it works in texas
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Okay, been browsing through the new riders forum for 2 days now.

I have also been browsing through the different companies' website.


I have a question now about manual shifting. I know the left hand is used for the clutch. and left foot is used for gear shifting.
Can you explain to me how I would use a 6 speed on a bike? Press down to shift up, lift up to shift down? What about the Clutch handle? Can I let it out fast?

I'm asking this because on cars ...you let the clutch out fast, you end up damaging alot of things, therefore on a car you would SLIP the clutch.



Would all this be taught in the MSF course?
 

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Vash, here in Las Vegas they give you their written test on the second day and then the riding test at the end of the last day. We don't have to take the DMV written or riding test.
GSavior- On a standard six speed, first gear is on the bottom and sixth is on the top, and neutral is in between first and second. So say I start out in first- I am going to roll off the throttle and pull the clutch in. Then as the clutch is still pulled in, I am going to pull UP on the gear shift lever to move into second. They will teach you all of this before they let you ride the bike so no worries,
 

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Strength and Honor
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Can you explain to me how I would use a 6 speed on a bike? Press down to shift up, lift up to shift down? What about the Clutch handle? Can I let it out fast?

I'm asking this because on cars ...you let the clutch out fast, you end up damaging alot of things, therefore on a car you would SLIP the clutch.



Would all this be taught in the MSF course?
Yes, those are all covered in the MSF. When you're done with the class, it won't likely be second nature but it won't be difficult to do, either. As noted, MSF is highly recommended and for friends and family, I tell them its a requirement.
 

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The clutch is pretty well the same as a car's, you have to let it out slowly. Actually, you have to be much more careful with it, than you will in a car. Bike engines use very small, light flywheels, and thus are much, much easier to stall. Car engine give this last push before the stall, shaking the entire car. Bike engines stall like someone flipped the engine kill switch. Furthermore, you have to rev them pretty high before you get moving. On a sportbike, it is not unussual to rev the engine to 3k rpm and feather the clutch out to take off from a stop.

One of the things that confused me when first learning about bikes is that the shifter is not at all like a cars. You do not put it in a certain position to select a certain gear. Instead, it acts like paddle shifters on a car. It rests in a default position. Moving it down makes the transmission go down a gear, and the shifter returns to its default position. Likewise, moving the shifter up makes the transmission shift up.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
That's nice to know Stay Red about the MSF.

Well its still a long while till I get a bike but I already been looking through it.

I'm gonna tell you a bit about my taste in Cars first.
I have always prefered lighter cars over all else. I have also prefered smaller engines with big power and High Reving. Minimum 1hp/liter. Favorite car ever is GT3 RS porsche, M3 E46, Lotus elise/Exige, Honda S2000

Now I was looking at something SMALL as the sticky thread suggested.
125cc or 250cc. I totally like the Aprilia RS125 and the Kawasaki Ninja 250r.:love:
 

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yeah that is defiantly your best bet a lot of people say they will outgrow a 250 to fast and end up wanting to sell it right away and loose money. but if you want to say alive for more than your first couple of times on a bike it is smart to take small steps. after you get comfortable then get a bigger bike if you like the idea of riding.
 

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Strength and Honor
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Don't discount the 500's either. They might be equally suitable, depending. For instance, if you're going to be doing some Interstate I would recommend the 500 route, personally.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I was reading on Motorcycle.com forums that to take the MSF course you would need equipment first?

Helmet, jacket?

I was wondering what kind of material of clothing, shoes would be good and necessary for the MSF course?
 

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Strength and Honor
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Most MSF courses provide a helmet. You normally must come in jeans (minimally), long-sleeved shirt or jacket (latter preferred), and boots that cover your ankles. You must also bring gloves. But remember, there is pretty wide latitude so work gloves suffice, work boots or even hikers if they're high enough around the ankles. Don't spend a lot on gear getting ready for the class because you just might not like it!

:2cents:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I know, I'm gonna have to check with the Harley Davidson dealership here in Vegas and see what I need.

Of course it will still be months before I'm gonna take the course. Saving up money.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Am planning on getting an Arai helmet when the time comes.

Was wondering what is the difference between

Arai:
Rx-7
Quantum
Profile
Vector

And what is the safety code for motorcycle helmets?

For auto motorsports it is SA2005...which is a helmet i have.

For the helmets i saw, they only say DOT approved. Shouldn't there be M2005?
 

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Strength and Honor
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DOT is the minimum requirements.
SNELL is a different standard, which is what I think the M2005 refers to (Google it to be sure). All SNELL helmets are DOT approved, but the reverse is not the case unless so noted.
ECE is a European standard and I think its generally accepted to be better than the former two.
 
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